American powerpop revivalist Matthew Sweet, Canadian songwriter Damhnait Doyle, and revered international troubadour Alejandro Escovedo headline the 2019 Halifax Urban Folk Festival (HUFF). As is tradition, each artist will perform at The Carleton with a specially curated backing band of local musicians dubbed The Halifax All-Stars, and will also participate in HUFF's noteworthy Songwriters Circles throughout the festival.
Wintersleep's Paul Murphy, JUNO Award winner Catherine MacLellan, and celebrated musician Christina Martin also perform as part of these Songwriters Circles in the revered third chair.
HUFF 2019's Carleton lineup also includes a Gordie Sampson Songcamp 10th Anniversary show featuring Mo Kenney, Carleton Stone (of Port Cities), Kaleigh O'Connor, Dave Sampson, Jodi Guthro, Willie Stratton, Dylan Guthro (of Port Cities), Maura Whitman, and Cameron Nickerson, as well as performances throughout the week by The Burning Hell, Museum Pieces, Gianna Lauren, Ian Janes, Chris Kirby, The Novaks (acoustic), Cameron, Cory Tetford, and others.
Tickets for these shows are available for purchase on Friday, June 14 at 10:00am AST by clicking HERE.
Celebrating its tenth anniversary this year, HUFF takes place in Halifax, NS from August 25 to September 01, 2019.
Matthew Sweet emerged in the early '90s as the leading figure of the American power pop revival. His 1991 album, Girlfriend, became a word-of-mouth critical and commercial hit with its title track reaching the Top Five on the Modern Rock charts. His next two records, Altered Beast and 100% Fun were both critically acclaimed and successful albums, with the latter reaching platinum status and making many year-end best-of lists. Sweet’s most recent studio album, Wicked System of Things, was released on Record Store Day in 2018.
Born and raised in Newfoundland and Labrador, Damhnait Doyle is a Canadian singer/songwriter who has recently released Liquor Store Flowers, her first solo album of original material in 15 years. Throughout her career, she has released eight full length recordings as both a solo artist and a member of award-winning groups Shaye and The Heartbroken. Doyle has toured Canada extensively, opening for legends like Willie Nelson and Steve Earle, and has collaborated on numerous recordings including albums by Kevin Parent and Bruce Cockburn.
Crossing borders, jumping barriers, taking risks, and betting it all: that’s the path Alejandro Escovedo has been taking in his lifelong search for the heart of rock and roll. He’s been a punk of the rebel kind in The Nuns, a cowpunk of the non-Western variety in Rank and File, commander of a guitar army in The True Believers, and an orchestral conductor in his solo work. He has collaborated with Bruce Springsteen, John Cale, Los Lobos, and many others throughout his career. Escovado returns to HUFF this year as the festival's 10th anniversay legacy artist.
"It’s hard to imagine the Halifax scene back in the day if Matthew Sweet hadn’t come along to inspire bands like Sloan and Cool Blue Halo. When I told Matt Mays I’d booked him, I got this text back: 'COME ON!!!! WHAT!!!!!! AAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!' Needless to say, Mays is playing in that Halifax All-Star band. Damhnait’s new album is a stunner and Newfoundland band The Novaks will be her All-Stars. Anyone who saw Alejandro’s previous show will know why he’s our legacy artist this year. The man is the personification of intelligent, heart-felt rock’n’roll," says Mike Campbell, Artistic Director of HUFF. "I couldn’t be more excited about this year’s HUFF lineup! Oh, and 10 years of HUFF?! I am gobsmacked and thrilled all at once that our little festival made it this far. Come celebrate with us!"
HUFF EXPANDS TO LOCAL CRAFT BREWERIES AND TO DARTMOUTH
Expanding the festival's footprint throughout the city, HUFF 2019 sees performances in three local craft breweries.
Halifax's Good Robot Brewing Company hosts free Songwriters Circles in the early evening featuring T. Thomason, Terra Spencer, Daniel Walker, Ethan Ash (UK), Jake Duggan, Laura Merrimen, Mia Cathleen. Good Robot's programming also plays host to a series of ticketed, later evening shows including Strangers in the Alps: A Tribute to Phoebe Bridgers feat. members of Hillsburn, Hello Delaware and friends, and performances by The Maes, Leeroy Stagger, Quote the Raven, Willow St. Station, and Novusolis.
Across the harbour, two Dartmouth breweries also host free Songwriters Circles throughout the festival. Brightwood Brewery sees performances by Shaun Verreault of Wide Mouth Mason, Garrett Mason, Ethan Ash (UK), and Tim Moxam. Brightwood's Songwriters Circles are presented by Atlantic Skin Care.
Just down the street, New Scotland Brewing Company's lineup features Mo Kenney, Eamon McGrath, Thomas Stajcer, Michael S. Ryan, Elsie Morden, and Tim Moxam. New Scotland's Songwriters Circles are presented by East Coast Credit Union.
"We are over the moon to be part of HUFF bringing artists over to Dartmouth for the first time," says Ian Lawson, owner of Brightwood Brewery. "This event brings in world class acts that normally we'd have to take a ferry ride to check out. Bring it on! We've been waiting for shows of this caliber in our neighbourhood."
More information about HUFF's 2019 programming, including additional performers, venues, and partnerships will be announced in the coming weeks.
To learn more about the Halifax Urban Folk Festival and to buy tickets,